JYP Leisure’s “blind bundle” launch capitalises on our deep-rooted FOMO

Would you purchase a single by an artist you knew nothing about and hadn’t heard a be aware of music from? That some folks would is of venture JYP Leisure took final month when the corporate launched a “blind bundle” for its new lady group, who gained’t make their debut till February 2022.

The idea of the discharge was formidable – present followers with no details about the group behind it, give everybody simply 10 days to pre-order it and tease its launch with trailers making heavy use of phrases like “restricted” and “extraordinary” to get the world’s love of distinctive collectables ticking. The discharge gained’t go into manufacturing once more when the group debut, so a small window of time in July was your solely probability to pay money for the CD (at an inexpensive value, a minimum of), which can even include a photograph e-book, photograph card, poster, premium membership card and extra.

Greater than 60,000 snapped up a replica – compared to the 77,000 items bought by ITZY, the final Okay-pop lady group to debut beneath the company, within the first week for his or her first bodily launch ‘It’z Icy’. Positive, the gross sales numbers between the 2 could be related, however ITZY had additionally made their debut with the smash hit ‘Dalla Dalla’ within the months prior and – presumably – constructed up a big fan base.

JYP’s technique right here might need been dangerous, nevertheless it had one factor it might depend on – trendy society’s intrinsic FOMO. For those who didn’t get a replica final month then you definately’re out of luck. However what if this single turns into a Okay-pop basic? What if the brand new lady group turn out to be your ult faves? How will it make us really feel not being a part of an unique, elite membership that did put their religion on this launch?

The success of the “blind bundle” displays some sections of the Okay-pop fandom’s angle to albums. With their array of photograph playing cards and additional goodies, they turn out to be much less like vessels to take heed to the music (how many individuals truly personal a CD participant in 2021?) and extra of a collectable so as to add to cabinets of memorabilia. Who can blame them? Okay-pop releases are sometimes so superbly designed, they really feel like an funding in a bodily product which you can pore over in comparison with the western business’s commonplace jewel case packages. Though Okay-pop is the antithesis of the stereotype of an previous, white, male document collector – shiny! flashy! enjoyable! – its followers could possibly be the fashionable model of these musos who hunt out each iteration of a document so as to add to their assortment.

Shifting so many copies of a single that you recognize treasured little about is really one thing that might solely be achieved in Okay-pop. Think about Polydor, for instance, attempting to get folks within the UK to take an opportunity on a bodily launch by an artist that had but to be unveiled with music that had but to be heard? It could tank utterly, no matter whether or not the musician behind the mission went on to be the subsequent Taylor Swift or Ed Sheeran. Even with massive fanbases, world-renowned reputations and a deep information of what an artist’s music seems like, acts wrestle to promote as many as 60,000 bodily copies – Foo Fighters, one of many greatest bands on the earth, solely moved 31,450 CD and vinyl items of their newest album ‘Medication At Midnight’ in its first week of launch within the UK.

Taking an opportunity on JYP’s “blind bundle” additionally says rather a lot concerning the excessive esteem wherein followers maintain the label’s legacy. It doesn’t matter what you consider how the corporate treats its artists or founder and namesake Mr Park Jin-young himself, this company introduced us iconic acts like Surprise Ladies and Miss A, and newer titans of Okay-pop TWICE and ITZY. Provided that repute, it’s no surprise so many individuals snapped up the mysterious new launch – think about how worthwhile an excellent restricted one-off single would turn out to be if the brand new lady group achieved something close to the identical as their sunbaes (seniors in Korean).

Except the music is completely horrible, it’s virtually a on condition that subsequent yr’s rookies shall be profitable, because of one thing followers prefer to name “massive three privilege”. Even when the songs do suck, their standing as JYP signees might nonetheless push them ahead because of the label’s perceived energy and status inside the business. That can win them worthwhile promotion, slots on music reveals and house within the consideration spans of curious listeners.

Regardless of the success of the “blind bundle”, it appears unlikely that this may turn out to be a typical pattern. Smaller businesses don’t have the identical privilege and pull to make such a launch a safe technique and would herald pointless threat that might do extra harm than good. Different massive labels would possibly attempt their hand at it a couple of times, however the novelty of not understanding what you’re getting will quickly put on off and, relying on how JYP’s new lady group go down, there could possibly be a backlash to the concept if followers aren’t happy with the top outcomes. And if this did turn out to be the norm, that dependable previous FOMO would now not be a assured money-spinner.

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